FedEx Corp. is letting customers specify when, where and how they want packages delivered to their homes, matching a similar service offered by United Parcel Service Inc.
FedEx Delivery Manager notifies customers of pending deliveries that they can monitor on a mobile device or computer without a traditional tracking number. They can schedule a delivery for a specific date, time and location, Raj Subramaniam, executive vice president of marketing and communications at FedEx Services, said in an interview.
“The fastest growing marketplace in the U.S. and in many markets around the world is e-commerce,” Subramaniam said. “More shopping is going online, and the services required are different. Our service is a very customer-centric offering.”
The number of U.S. online shoppers is expected to increase to 192 million in 2016 from 167 million last year, Subramaniam said. FedEx Delivery Manager and UPS My Choice may help both shippers capture more online retail business, which is forecast by Forrester Research Inc. to grow 13 percent to $262 billion this year.
Sign-up for the FedEx service is free, although options such as having a delivery made to a different address or at a specific date and time incur a charge of $5. Customers can request a free vacation hold for deliveries, or specify a location for the package to be left, such as the back door.
Subramaniam declined to comment on potential revenue to be gained by Memphis, Tennessee-based FedEx through the new service, which begins today. UPS My Choice was introduced in September 2011 and had almost 2.5 million customers as of Jan. 31.